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Re: Singapore also suppress Hakka
>From firstname.lastname@example.org Fri Dec 6 20:22:09 1996
From: Chin Philip <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: Singapore also suppress Hakka
[moderator: Chhiang ki yit fun to firstname.lastname@example.org Tou Chhia!]
The speakers at the Hakka Convention are not necessary all Hakkas themselves.
This was related to me by Mr. Chin from the Khek Community (Spore) who was
organizing this conference. Therefore some of the speakers DO NOT understand
the Hakka dialect, and can only speak in Mandarin or English. They are
basically researchers or experts on the trend of the Hakkas history,
politically and economically.
Hope this clarify the misunderstanding that Hakka was not allowed in the
conference. There was no evidence to this.
On Fri, 6 Dec 1996 email@example.com wrote:
> >From firstname.lastname@example.org Mon Dec 2 21:36:13 1996
> From: Song Kwok Yuen <email@example.com>
> Subject: RE: Singapore also suppress Hakka
> [moderator:Please cc a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks !]
> I do not know if SM Lee Kuan Yew speaks Hakka, but I have a feeling that
> he does. However, he will not speak Hakka in public because in Singapore
> we promote the use of Mandarin to replace dialects for public use. This
> is both for economic reasons and to avoid misunderstanding when two
> parties of different dialect groups trying to communicate with each
> other, whether in everyday life or doing business with each other.
> Politicians in other countries speak Hakka to rally for votes, but this
> will not work in Singapore because Singapore is multi racial/dialects
> and there is no concentration of a particular dialect group in any
> constituency. He can't take care of a particular group without
> neglecting the other. So Mandarin is used instead.
> I am a Hakka and I certainly did not feel that Singapore government
> looks down on Hakka. For some reason I did not come across the article
> on education policy by An-Pheng, so I cannot discuss on this. But I
> still believe Singapore's move to concentrate on languages like English
> and Mandarin instead of dialects is the right move, both politically and
> economically. The fact that there are more chinese in the world who can
> use the English language compared to the number of westerners who uses
> Chinese made me feel good. This to me is a good reason not to hold on to
> our Mother tongue and neglect learning others.
> Having said that, I must stress that I am NOT saying that we do not
> learn our Mother tongue, in fact I speak Hakka and am proud of it.
> Singapore government also did not ban the use of Hakka. Actually I do
> not understand why they did not use Hakka during the Hakka convention
> since only Hakka attended. Otherwise, it wouldn't be a Hakka convention.
> I believe maybe the organiser carried our speak Mandarin campaign a bit
> too far, or they knew in advance that not all the attendees understand
> Hakka, that is why they chose other languages.
> Singapore government wish to promote the use of Mandarin, what better
> way then to do it through the mass media. This is effective
> implementation. It may seems to be authoritarianrism but it works. Now
> almost every chinese Singaporean speaks Mandarin. And again, I am proud
> of it. Some may argue because of this, our children may not be able to
> speak dialects. This, I believe, has to be up to us to ensure that that
> we teach our children the dialects that we want them to speak.
> Song Kwok Yuen
> From: email@example.com
> To: Song Kwok Yuen
> Subject: Singapore also suppress Hakka
> Date: Monday, December 02, 1996 10:52PM
> >From ALBERT-C@wpogate.slu.edu Wed Nov 27 14:15:22 1996
> From: Jen-Yih Chu <ALBERT-C@wpogate.slu.edu>
> Subject: Singapore also suppress Hakka
> Tai-ka ho:
> The following is the letter I sent earlier to Jonathan:
> Dear Johnathan:
> As you discuss once before, both the governments in Taiwan and
> China suppress Hakka. Do you believe Singapore too? You know
> that more than I do. Can ex-primier Lee, K-Y still speak Hakka?
> Or should I said, will he speak Hakka publicly in TV or in the
> public meeting.
> In Taiwan, at least the politician will speak Hakka during the
> campaign. In order to get more vote, the candidates are willing
> to speak Hakka. Like the last few elections, President Lee
> Teng-hui, the Taiwan provincial chief (governer) Song Chu-yu,
> Taipei major Chen Shui-pian all learned to speak few Hakka in the
> Hakka areas. Do you or any one know, do candidates speak Hakka at
> all in Singapore for the sake of more votes?
> I just curious. Thanks Jen-yih
> >From reading the letters of Kuang-liong and An-Pheng, indeed
> Singapore government looks down Hakka and other southern
> languages. The description of education policy by An-Pheng is
> not much different from Taiwan probably 10 years ago. Languages
> originally existed in Taiwan such Hoklo and Hakka were banned in
> school, TV and public places. Not until Taiwan became more
> demoncrat, the right to use mother tongue prevailed. In USA, TV
> programs in different languages are allowed. I believe this is
> the difference between demoncracy and authoritarianrism.
> Thanks Jen-yih